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June 29, 2022
Publish Date: June 28, 2022   |  Tags:   Healthcare IT


Outfitting for the Ortho Boom

The OR of the Future Isn't Far Away

Safer Care, Better Outcomes as Caregivers Keep Themselves and Patients Safe - Sponsored Content

High-Definition Video Systems Transform ORs

How Virtual Reality Can Transform Surgical Teaching


Outfitting for the Ortho Boom

Planning and purchasing with the future in mind is key for creating outpatient total joints ORs.

Advanced Room Albany Med Health System
ROOM TO OPERATE The spacious $1 million-plus ORs at The Center for Advanced Ambulatory Surgery can accommodate a robotic-assisted knee surgery system, tables for hip replacements, and advanced tools and devices for spine surgery.

Total joint replacement service lines are migrating to outpatient settings, and the ways in which the ASCs that house them are laid out, staffed and outfitted are often unique. The Center for Advanced Ambulatory Surgery in Malta, N.Y., which opened last year, is a great example that provides a glimpse into the future of orthopedic care.

Location will play a pivotal role in the viability of the $19.1M facility, a joint venture between The Bone & Joint Center, Albany Med Health Center and Saratoga Hospital located about 45 minutes north of Albany and in proximity to five of the 10 fastest-growing towns in the state of New York.

"In order for the facility to have the patient volume it needed to operate at full capacity, it had to be built in the middle of that growth," says David Quinn, MD, an upper extremity surgeon at The Bone & Joint Center. "The new surgery center is positioned to serve thousands of patients from the Mid-Hudson River Valley to Canada." Another benefit of the location is that the surgery center is less than 100 feet from an Albany Med Health "super urgent care center," a de facto ER that will also help to bolster patient volume.

Thoughtful design concepts were used to build the 28,500-square-feet surgery center, which is located on the first floor of the new building. The lobby's wood floor and ceiling lights remind visitors more of the lobby at a high-end hotel than a medical facility. Such spaces are becoming a norm in new ASC designs, says Suraj S. Soudagar, MS, MBA, LEED AP, principal and project executive at IMEG, a healthcare engineering firm in Naperville, Ill., who says these designs boost patient satisfaction and alleviate pre-surgical anxiety about what's to come beyond the lobby.

The surgery center features eight pre-op bays, six surgical suites, eight PACU bays and six discharge rooms. Its front third houses the reception area, pre-op and PACU bays and the discharge rooms, which feature sliding glass walls for privacy, a stretcher, a lounge chair for a visitor and a television. The middle section houses the sterile corridor, which includes the row of six ORs, while the rear third is dedicated to storage and a large sterile processing department.

The center is outfitted with a robotic-assisted knee surgery system, tables for hip replacements that allow for hyperextension and external rotation to promote faster discharges, and advanced tools and devices for spine surgery. Each OR cost more than $1M to outfit.

"We have a shiny new coin that cost a pretty penny and will be worth every cent," says Dr. Quinn. "That said, people are more important than places. Caring staff members who are eager to learn, fun to work with and serious at the same time, combined with excellent processes, will always make for a very successful surgery center."

The OR of the Future Isn't Far Away

Numerous technology advancements will converge to transform ORs for the better over the next decade.

Future OR AdventHealth
SURGERY OF TOMORROW ORs like this one at AdventHealth's new Taneja Center for Surgery leverage advanced technology to transform surgery and enhance outcomes

Operating rooms are evolving to be smarter, more collaborative, more precise places to work due to numerous exciting technological advances over the past decade. Speak with surgical leaders about the future, however, and you'll walk away convinced you haven't seen anything yet in terms of perioperative technology evolution.

"ORs are going to look very different in the future," says Michael P. Ast, MD, vice chair of the HSS Innovation Institute and chief medical innovation officer at Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. "Nothing will be on the ground. Data and images will be displayed on floating screens or digitally projected into augmented reality (AR) glasses. Things like patient information, the consent form and the timeout checklist could be visible to everybody in the room."

Advanced technology such as tracking and automation systems, computer-assisted surgery, robotics and AR are some of the key developments on Dr. Ast's radar. "I think the platforms will combine to automate the entire surgical experience," he says. "Eventually, every surgeon could wear some type of AR headset, and when using robotic or computer-assistive technology, they'll see everything right in front of them in the surgical field, and the information will be projected for everyone else in the room to see. Everything will be wireless, making it simpler, easier and safer to use."

Patients will likely be tagged with wireless technology that identifies them throughout the perioperative process and connects to their relevant clinical information, which Dr. Ast says will make patient care easier and more personalized. "The technology will perform its own safety checks and alert the surgical team if the wrong patient is in the wrong OR or about to undergo the wrong surgery," he says.

That's not all. Dr. Ast also foresees the following developments transforming ORs over the next decade:

  • Video monitors on stands, booms and walls disappearing in favor of video projections on walls and other surfaces and holographic images in the air.
  • Remote surgeries and live, on-demand collaboration and mentorship from surgeons, radiologists and other providers who are not physically present in the OR.
  • Reduced square footage requirements as equipment either gets smaller or disappears entirely. "When we started with computer navigation for knee replacement, it was a big line-of-sight console," says Dr. Ast. "Now the navigation technology we use is literally in a smartphone. As the technology improves, we'll need less space."
  • "Visiting" other surgery centers without needing to travel to them. "It will enable sharing of best practices in a much logistically simpler way," says Dr. Ast.

The best part of all of these not-so-futuristic advancements is that they will almost certainly produce better outcomes and improved patient experiences. "The more we implement technology, the safer surgery will become," says Dr. Ast.

Safer Care, Better Outcomes as Caregivers Keep Themselves and Patients Safe
Sponsored Content

Education initiatives, patient tools and smart equipment combine to provide the best experience for the patient.

Did you know that 8 out of 10 nurses say they frequently work with musculoskeletal pain?1 This physical discomfort makes their jobs that much harder as they diligently strive to keep patients safe during surgical procedures from pre-op to post-op. The challenges nurses face in patient care every day are exacerbated by patients who are getting older, heavier and sicker and aren't limited to the hospital as these patients enter the outpatient setting.

As caregivers, nurses also need to take care of their own physical needs to be able to offer better outcomes for their patients. Stryker has developed solutions that not only help protect caregivers from injury, but also improve the overall patient experience. This approach revolves around designing and building equipment that helps nurses take care of themselves as they lift and move patients. Stryker's BackSmart products improve an individual's ergonomic ability to care for the patient by reducing or eliminating tasks that strain their back.

Supporting caregivers with clinical education and practical resources is another key solution to keeping everyone safe. Stryker's Focus RN® – an accredited learning portal – offers a range of clinical interactive modules providing users with contact hours, implementation and assessment tools, customized workshops, clinical expert speaker programs as well as whitepapers, protocol examples and professional guidelines. This educational program guides nurses and OR leaders on how to provide safe transport and strategic patient care at all stages of the patient's journey.

The range of educational topics offered include quality improvement in the acute care setting, pressure injuries, reducing risk factors for falls, saving skin, obesity, comorbidities and managing normothermia.

Stryker demonstrates a strong commitment to patient and caregiver safety through technology initiatives, customer feedback, as well as caregiver and patient programs. Company-wide collaboration brings holistic safety solutions to both patients and caregivers across the continuum and sites of care, continuing to drive toward greater impact through new technologies and solutions.


1. American Nurses Association. 2011. 2011 Health and Safety Survey Report

Note: For more information about Stryker's Safer Care, Better Outcomes initiative click here https://www.stryker.com/content/dam/stryker/about/annual-review/2021/SYK-001_2021%20Comprehensive%20Report.pdf#page=18 and also visit focusrn.stryker.com for the learning platform.

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